Press Release for Successful Fund Raising Program on Dec 14, 2008 in NJ
“There are as many as 2,07,000 temples in Karnataka & the total income of these
temples amounts to 72 crores. Out of this, only a sum of 6 crores are being spent
by the Government for their upkeep. On the other hand, the Govt. spend a
phenomenal amount of Rs 50 crores for madrassas & Rs 10 crores for churches
(from the Govt. Funds)" - Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, India Today in 2003
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Prakasa Rao
Fund Raising to protect temples in India with grand Ballet and Light Music
NEW JERSEY (Dec 17, 2008) – A successful fundraiser was held at New Jersey North Brunswick High School auditorium on Dec 14th, 2008 for protection of Temples in India. The program consisted of Kumara Sambhavam by Pasumarthy Sarma from India and Lakshmi Bapu troupe from Kuchipudi Dance Academy, Maryland, USA and Light Music Program by Anitha Krishna and Troupe. The event attracted about 500 people.
The presentation on plight of temples in India moved the audience and were aghast at the deploring condition of temples in India under Government control due to corruption during last 25 years. Many were surprised to know that in India only Hindu Temples are allowed to be taken over by State Governments in the name of better management, but in the process in many states the corruption is looting them into non-existence.
Some examples: In Andhra Pradesh there were 34,443 temples under the Government control and 30,000 temples cannot even afford to light a lamp. Temple lands, 20% of 420,000 acres supposed to be used for sustenance of the temples are encroached by political patronages and 40% of land is leased at Rs. 5/- to Rs. 40/- per acre per annum. These lands are sold at throw away prices to political patronages. The prices are so low as 0.4% of the market value.
In Karnataka, per Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and India Today of 2003, out of 72 crores collected from 2,07,000 temples, 6 crores are given back to temples and indirectly 50 crores are given for Hajj trips to Muslims and 10 crores for churches and 6 crores for secular purposes. 25% of temples (50,000) are expected to be closed for want of funds. Similar story is true in Kerala, Tamilnadu, Maharashtra and other states.
The presentation highlighted as to how Global Hindu Heritage Foundation is active through Padayatras, Protests, Law suits, Seminars, Email Campaigns which are turning the tide in Andhra Pradesh. The current Padayatra being carried out by Kamal Kumar Swami over 5000 Kms through villages in Andhra Pradesh is bringing awareness to more than 10 million people.
The excellent performance of Kumara Sambhavam enthralled audience who longed to see more. While Pasumarthy Sarma, a direct disciple of Vempati Chinna Satyam and Lakshmi Bapu are professionals, what took everyone by surprise is also the quality rendered by senior students of Kuchipudi Dance academy. It was a pride to see all Indian American Children who gave such high quality performance.
The dedication in the program touched upon audience. The appeal for funds was made for the protection of temples that will lead to the protection of our culture. If the temples disappear, our culture and the arts which could be wonderfully displayed by our children will soon wither away.
The music program by Anitha Krishna, Suresh, Rajeev and the Orchestra team performed well with nice songs mesmerizing the audience in several languages Hindi, Tamil, Kannada and Telugu.
The Hindu Human Rights Exhibition posters educated the audience and several made suggestions that booklets with that information be made available to people for educating them about the Hindu Human Rights in India as well as outside India.
Detailed information including videos/photos is available at http://www.savetemples.org